Jonathan Hart contributed to this report.
A second half penalty from striker Brett Williams clinched a 1-0 victory for Aldershot Town and extended Lincoln’s winless run to three games.
The shots were gifted the penalty just three minutes after the break after Imps centre half Nat brown clumsily handled in the box.
Despite a string of guilt edge second half chances. The Imps couldn’t find an equaliser to rouse the spirits of the home fans in very wet conditions.
Lincoln’s high tempo start had threatened to brighten up a murky Sincil Bank .
Sean Newton advanced down the left wing to flash a low drive across the face of goal which narrowly evaded Adi Yussuf at the far post.
The Imps early pressure in the first few minutes was short-lived however. Aldershot were soon on top and Lincoln had their keeper to thank for maintaining the deadlock. Shot stopper Farman, pulled off a string of three stunning saves to thwart the away side.
The first of which saw him diving to his right to parry away a Gibbs strike from the edge of the box, with his palms being stung again seconds later by Aldershot captain Craig Stanley’s viscous shot.
Although the most impressive of the three was the last as he reacted quickly at point blank range to keep out Lewis Young.
Lincoln could muster little in response to Aldershot’s pressure and had to wait until the 19th minute for their first shot goal.
19 year old Adi Yussuf making his first start for the Imps teed up Jon Nolan from 25 yards who fired the ball straight at Aldershot keeper Nick Pope.
Unfortunately for Lincoln, that would be the only time they’d test the keeper in the first period.
The Imps were restricted to speculative attempts from distance with shots from Jordan, Fairhurst, Yussuf and a Nolan free kick sailing comfortably wayward of the target.
Aldershot have the joint best defensive record on the road in the league so it was no surprise that chances were at a premium.
As the half wore on Lincoln began to get a foothold in the game and they came close just before half time.
Jordan’s fizzing low cross was deflected agonisingly over Yussuf outstretched right boot at the far post preventing an easy tap in.
The games only goal came just three minutes into the second half when a seemingly harmless Jordan Roberts cross was handled in the area by veteran centre half Nat Brown.
Aldershot’s top scorer Brett Williams stepped up and coolly side-footed the ball into the top right hand corner sending Farman the wrong way.
It was a major setback for the Imps, who had few chances until the introduction of Nick Wright for Adi Yussuf on the hour mark.
Instantly the Imps had a greater attacking threat. Just two minutes later when Luke Foster’s viscously deflected 25 yard strike sent Pope scrambling desperately to his left, Soon the imps were in the ascendancy and pressing for an equaliser.
In the 66th minute a Jon Nolan cross fell to the feet of Nick Wright with his back to goal just 8 yards out. The substitute turned neatly but scuffed the shot straight at The Shots keeper.
However seven minutes later Aldershot keeper Nick Pope was far less comfortable. Pope carelessly palmed a cross into the path of Andrew Boyce whose low shot was blocked on the line by a backtracking Manny Oyeleke.
Despite almost gifting Lincoln an equaliser, Aldershot held firm through the final 15 minutes as Lincoln’s pressure petered out giving the away side a precious three points at the final whistle.
Paul Farman – 9: Pulled off three stunning saves in the first half and had no chance with the penalty. (The Linc Sport Man of the Match)
Tom Miller – 7: Solid performance, kept Aldershot’s pacey winger Roberts quiet.
Andrew Boyce – 7: No mistakes, and was unlucky to have his shot cleared off the line.
Nat Brown – 4: His blatant handball cost Lincoln the game.
Sean Newton – 7: Good defensively and always an attacking threat with dangerous crosses.
Luke Foster – 7: An industrious performance despite playing out of position in midfield.
Jon Nolan – 7: The Imps best midfielder setting up a great chance for Wright.
Todd Jordan – 7: Failed to stretch the Aldershot rear-guard but worked hard throughout.
Alan Power – 6: Largely anonymous throughout, one of his quieter games.
Waide Fairhurst – 6: Wasteful with long shots when better options were available.
Adi Yussuf – 7: Impressed in his first start. Rose to the occasion, a good prospect.
Bohan Dixon – 6: Never really made an impression on the game from the left wing.
Nick Wright: – 7: The imps most dangerous striker, performed well as a target man.
Post match – Chris Gray
Gary Simpson, in the post press conference was obviously disappointed at the defeat and especially the Nat Brown handball, which lead to Aldershot’s winner.
He said, “I don’t know what we doing for the penalty. Brain block, I don’t know what it was.”
He continued, “We had quite a few chances, we’ve put Boyce up front and he had quite a few chances but I suppose you get these days.”
Simpson felt aggrieved with how his team tried to play football when nothing was on.
Simpson tried to look on the positive side as well. He said, “People get carried away with the good start that they’ve had. The last two years, this clubs gone to the last day of the season to stay in the division. We are trying to improve all the time.”
Finally, Simpson concluded that injuries and suspension had cost his side in some matches.
He said, “I think we’ve coped with the injuries to strikers reasonable well. It may be starting to catch up with us now. We could do with those players finding form so we can kick on again.”
He continued, “We’ve not got a full complement but need players to start to step up to the plate so we can push on.”
Lincoln City are away to Kidderminster next weekend.Tweet